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  • About
  • The Global ETD Search service is a free service for researchers to find electronic theses and dissertations. This service is provided by the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations.
    Our metadata is collected from universities around the world. If you manage a university/consortium/country archive and want to be added, details can be found on the NDLTD website.

The Race for America: Blackness, Belonging, and Empire in the Transamerican Nineteenth Century

Boutelle, Russell Joseph 01 August 2016 (has links)
Drawing on writings from the US, Cuba, Trinidad, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Liberia, my dissertation examines how ideas and experiences of racial categorization changed as Black individuals voluntarily crossed national borders in unprecedented numbers. I argue that race more broadly and Blackness in particular help chart the geopolitical formation of the Americas in two important ways. First, these terms index how fiction and nonfiction writings about Black migration normalized the exclusion of Black bodies from national geographies. Through narrative appeals to History (writ large), the texts I examine underwrote the idea that the Americas were destined to be the dominion of a transnational âwhiteâ race. Secondly, by reading racialized bodies through multiple, locally-defined definitions of Blackness, The Race for America illuminates how the collisions of contradictory racial epistemologies provided migratory people of color with opportunities to redefine their identities. Taking advantage of more slippery and capacious racial categories in the Caribbean or West Africa, many African Americans who left the USA secured political subjectivity for themselves where it was otherwise inaccessible. By shifting between local and transnational definitions of Blackness, The Race for America reveals how more flexible understandings of race can unravel the narratives of USAmerican exceptionalism, and provide critics with new tools for theorizing the hemisphereâs development.

Designing Cities & Men: Post-WWII Urban Renewal, Black Masculinity, and African American Aesthetics

Mensah, Lucy Kwabah 24 July 2016 (has links)
This dissertation examines the relationship between post-WWII urban renewal programs in the United States and aesthetic representations of black masculinity in 20th century African American literature. I argue that urban renewal-related processes such as evictions, slum clearance and redlining influenced the tropes and metaphors African American male writers and artists used to represent the existential dilemmas of dispossession African American men encountered in revitalized cities. I focus on New York City, Chicago, and Pittsburgh as three exemplary cities whose dismantled black belts offered black writers and artists generative material to think about the place of African American men in discussions about spatial autonomy, the relationship between individual and community, the process of identity formation, and, importantly, the potentially crippling lapse between African American menâs pursuit of idealized notions of American masculinity and the reality of their lived experiences as spatially dispossessed. Using a combination of historical contextualization, literary close reading, and visual analysis, I examine the works of figures such as Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin, Frank Marshall Davis, Romare Bearden, Gordon Parks, and Charles âTeenieâ Harris. Through this type of analytic approach, I bring attention to the racialized, gendered and sexualized linguistic and visual languages black male artists used to describe the renewed post-WWII American city, notably its complicity as an architecture that is highly suspicious of black menâs presence.

The Sacred Act of Reading: Spirituality, Performance, and Power in Afro-Diasporic Literature

Castro, Anne Margaret 26 July 2016 (has links)
âThe Sacred Act of Reading: Spirituality, Performance, and Power in Afro-Diasporic Literatureâ studies depictions of religious phenomena in multi-genre texts from across the Americas. Literary engagement with the philosophies and practices of religious and spiritual traditions including Vodou, Kumina, Myal, and Protestant Christianity provide insight into the complex relationships of power that suffuse these literary works. By concentrating on these spiritual practices in the Americas, "The Sacred Act of Reading" affirms the intricate and complex interchange of Afro-diasporic persons, ideas, and discourse across the western hemisphere. The literature studied in this project use religious paradigms to illuminate the physical and metaphysical effects of historical and contemporary systems of socio-political power including slavery, colonialism, and capitalism. By incorporating Euro-centric and African-derived epistemologies throughout this projectâs literary analyses, âThe Sacred Act of Readingâ finds that meaning is always intimately connected to assumptions about authority, recognized subjectivity, and the valuing of human experience. This project adopts an interpretive methodology of âperformative textual hermeneutics,â which focuses on the multi-sensory experiences of textual interpretation and creation. Dedicated to âlisteningâ to the wisdom of these literary works, this project finds that the actions and belief systems of readers and audiences are inevitably called into question when exploring the spiritual elements of power.

Nature's Spectacles: Ornament, Performance, and Natural History in the Long Eighteenth Century

Quigley, Killian Colm 29 July 2016 (has links)
Eighteenth-century British culture expressed ideas of Nature â aesthetic, scientific, and otherwise â that have exerted colossal influence ever since. Studies of the eraâs natural imagination have tended to prioritize such forms of literature, art, and natural philosophy that enjoyed polite approval in their day. This dissertation situates those forms in proximity to spectacle, matter and energy that pervaded the period but often invited harsh criticism, and tended to fade from view as epistemological and aesthetic entities consolidated themselves. What becomes clear from this research is that eighteenth-century spectacle was a vital player in attempts to define the natural, sometimes as the naturalâs contrary term. More frequently, spectacularity worked as provision, or stopover, for and en route to picturesque landscapes, natural history illustrations, and so on. It opened narrative, temporal, and even geographical possibilities that allowed writers, artists, and philosophers to confront the myriad intellectual and representational challenges attendant upon confrontations with plants, animals, and environmental process. It tended to vanish from the polished record, but its potencies continued to haunt and empower the systems of literature, visuality, and inquiry that drew upon them. âNatureâs Spectaclesâ traces and analyzes the role of spectacularity in currents of thinking about nature by drawing, primarily, from British, Irish, and French sources. The dissertation turns not only to spectacular shows or events â such as fairground performances, violent battle-scenes, or theatrical special effects â but to a complicated rhetoric of spectacularity, which tended to target ostentation, ornament, and their associated terms, such as femininity, inauthenticity, and the foreign. Environments and organisms could behave spectacularly, as well, particularly those whose movements, habits, and matter proved aesthetically, procedurally, or cognitively frustrating. By bringing variegated strains of spectacularity together, the dissertation shows how the lines that divide nature from its opposites reflect not simple ontological truths, but the points at which an eraâs aesthetic and philosophical imagination meets the world outside.


Yurevitch, Theodore Vadim 28 July 2015 (has links)
Folk/Americana is a novella that follows Tom, a Director of Photography and cameraman, and Ron Da Zont, a reality-TV bail bondsman, as they travel across America pursuing a criminal. The story is told from Toms point of view as the two protagonists struggle with making the show and their own apathy and identity confusion. As these characters make their way across America, they continuously encounter digression and distraction and must work to overcome their own understanding of themselves as fictional characters. Classic American detective fiction and road novels largely influence the progression of this novella. References to pop culture are a major element of the narrative progression as Tom, the narrator, constantly acknowledges popular songs alongside classical literature and history. The first major influence on this work is that of Erving Goffman. His sociological ideas about the self in society and the theatrics of life are a major thematic undercurrent to this work. Stylistically, Ive taken from every author Ive ever read in terms of my telling of the story, but most largely from Thomas Pynchonwhose worlds of hysterical realism have been a major influence on this writing. Approved Lorraine Lopez April 21, 2015

Fair game for the whole hog : celebrating abjection and puerility in a comic novel

Younger, Jim January 2011 (has links)
No description available.

'I don't really notice where I live' : Philip Larkin's literary nationalities

Wiemann, Birte January 2012 (has links)
With the journalist’s playfulness John Haffenden implicitly accuses Philip Larkin of “narrow-mindedness” and “cultural chauvinism” in his well-documented interview from 1981. Philip Larkin replies with two counter-questions: “But honestly, how far can one really assimilate literature in another language? In the sense that you can read your own?” If it was impossible to read, understand and emotionally react to literature in a foreign language as opposed to literary works composed in one’s native language, the foreign Larkin scholar would arrive at a dead-end before he or she has even crossed the Channel to England. The appeal of Larkin’s poetry would be restricted to a relatively small English target group. Is it this specific group Larkin has in mind when he says that “you write for everybody. Or anybody who will listen”? A look at the standard works of Larkin criticism almost makes this likely; most Larkin critics are either comfortably sharing Larkin’s own nationality or are at least Irish, Scottish, Welsh, American or Canadian native speakers of English. Thus, we hardly seem to be in a position to judge safely whether Larkin’s own poetry can be assimilated elsewhere. It is thus that Larkin’s oeuvre - prompted, to a large extent, by the poet’s own gruff assertion of comfortable insularity - is all too often perceived on narrowly English terms. Larkin’s cultural and national identity is taken for granted; his disparaging comments about abroad (“I hate being abroad. Generally speaking, the further one gets from home the greater the misery.”) are taken at face value. Perhaps it takes the perspective of a foreign European and non-native speaker of English to crack open dated perceptions. Indeed, Larkin’s engagement with cultural Otherness is profound. Tim Trengrove-Jones notes that “Larkin’s aesthetic took root and found its mature expression through specific moments of contact with the German, the French, and the Dutch” only to conclude paradoxically that these points of contact with the European Other cement Larkin’s position of English insularity. Larkin’s cultural identity will remain firmly English; his poetic engagement with cultural Otherness between Europe and America, however, transcends notions of petty insularity by a long stretch. His engagement with Ireland, France, America and Germany is so obviously premeditated that we can speak of literary nationalities. Jean-François Bayart’s comment that “we identify ourselves less with respect to membership in a community or a culture than with respect to the communities and cultures with which we have relations” is of particular significance in this context. Furthermore, Larkin’s negotiations of literary nationalities constantly exhibit points of contact with Marc Augé’s theory of non-place. It is against this background that the theory of the universality - as opposed to an assumed Englishness - of Larkin’s poetry is developed. In the context of political and sociological theories of nation and cultural identity I will argue that Larkin’s identity in his poetry is expressed through an awareness of common humanity as opposed to cultural exclusiveness. Introducing the ancient Stoics’ idea of cultural identity as concentric circles that denote self, family, city, nation and so on, I will argue that the universal appeal of Larkin’s poetry lies in the fact that he is always as intimately conscious in his writing of the outermost circle of ‘common humanity’ as he is of narrower more socially, politically or geographically limited self-definitions. In this he differs from Betjeman and Hughes who remain more English than Larkin because they define themselves within the categories of the inner circles: class, nation, economic group. It is Augé’s non-place in its familiarity that enhances the impression of universality in Larkin’s work. When Larkin mourns the loss of the “fields and farms” and “the meadows, the lanes” in “Going, Going”, elaborates on the “wind-muscled wheatfields” and the “[t]all church-towers” of “Howden and Beverley, Hedon and Patrington” in “Bridge for the Living” he negotiates not only the markers of English culture but also the (English) poetic tradition of pastoral. If Larkin’s non-place in its universal particularity comes at the Stoics’ concentric circles from the outside and touches on common humanity first, then Larkin’s version of provincialism perhaps entails sculpting the province in its particular universality as the smallest recognizable fragment within the circles of cultural identity. It is the less-deceived quality of Larkin’s approach to the poetic tradition that paradoxically makes a poem like “Here” a full-blooded pastoral. “The Importance of Elsewhere” has often been discussed in the context of its confrontation of two national identities, English and Irish, and the poet’s evasion of his own national identity in the liminal space between them. The chapter on Ireland will explore how different Larkin’s negotiation of nationality is from, say, that of Seamus Heaney, who never seems to stop digging, constantly looks downwards and backwards and seems to remain safely within the parameters of Irish national identity. Terry Whalen states that Larkin’s “best poems written in Ireland were not necessarily about Ireland at all” thus underlining Larkin’s immunity against “that Irish impulse to name and fix”. A reading of Patrick Kavanagh’s “My Room” against Larkin’s “Poetry of Departures” emphasises the fatality of assumed historico-political contexts to poetical works. The strong influence of Jules Laforgue on Larkin is the cutting edge of a larger set of influences from France. Gautier, Baudelaire, Verlaine, Rimbaud and the Symbolistes all leave more or less visible marks on different phases of his poetry, and feed one of the main strands of his poetic style. Larkin is often seen to arrive at Laforgue via Eliot, but this chapter explores how differently both poets assimilate the French poet’s influence. Larkin’s ‘Dutch’ poem “The Card-Players” is a striking negotiation of Laforgue with one of Larkin’s very few realisations of anthropological, chthonic place. Larkin’s English identity is clarified most effectively perhaps in juxtaposition with the familiar big brother, or brash cousin Otherness of America. Larkin’s loud confrontation with the American, or ‘international’ Modernism of ‘the mad lads’ who followed Pound perhaps distorts the picture. His work frequently echoes that of Eliot, and contains many modernist elements. From his early youth the States were a vivid country of his mind, black American jazz providing an essential element in his sensibility, and affected his poetry in subtle ways which are not always immediately evident. Larkin’s ‘jazz-poetry’ sets him in a context with the Beat poets, particularly Allen Ginsberg. However, jazz is not the sole point of contact with the USA. Indeed, Larkin engages with the poetry of the confessional poets and exhibits some striking intertextual relations with the poetry of Sylvia Plath. Larkin’s encounters with Germany were in terms of actual visits early in his life, rather than a profound literary influence. Nevertheless it is significant that both Jill and A Girl in Winter, miss out on the opportunity to swear allegiance to England in time of war. This chapter will build on the evidence that, though ‘foreign’ rather than of any specific nationality, Katherine in A Girl in Winter is the imaginative product of Larkin’s experience of Germany. Furthermore, the allegedly German Katherine functions as the fully realized prototype for the alienated speakers in Larkin’s mature poetry. Larkin’s almost proverbial exclamation “Foreign poetry? No!” is thus exposed as one of his characteristic masks. Indeed, the negotiation of and engagement with foreign poetry allows him to try on different literary nationalities without having to leave his cultural comfort zone. It is thus that Larkin’s poetry becomes universal.

(Neo-)Victorian impersonations : 19th century transvestism in contemporary literature and culture

Neal, Allison Jayne January 2012 (has links)
No description available.

Bridging fantasies : a critical study of the novels of Iain Banks

Colebrook, Martyn James January 2012 (has links)
No description available.

Prometheus to revelation : fire in the work of Tony Harrison

Whitaker, Stephen John January 2013 (has links)
No description available.

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